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  1. In situ TEM straining of nanograined free-standing thin films reveals various unexpected deformation mechanisms.

    In-situ transmission electron microscopy (TEM) straining experiments provide direct detailed observation of the deformation and failure mechanisms active at a length scale relevant to nanomaterials. This presentation will detail continued investigations into the active mechanisms governing high purity nanograined pulsed-laser deposited (PLD) nickel, as well as recent work into dislocation-particle interactions in nanostructured PLD aluminum-alumina alloys. Straining experiments performed on nanograined PLD free-standing nanograined Ni films with an engineered grain size distribution revealed that the addition of ductility with limited decrease in strength, reported in such metals, can be attributed to the simultaneous activity of three deformation mechanisms in frontmore » of the crack tip. At the crack tip, a grain agglomeration mechanism occurs where several nanograins appear to rotate, resulting in a very thin, larger grain immediately prior to failure. In the classical plastic zone in front of the crack tip, a multitude of mechanisms were found to operate in the larger grains including: dislocation pile-up, twinning, and stress-assisted grain growth. The region outside of the plastic zone showed signs of elasticity with limited indications of dislocation activity. The insight gained from in-situ TEM straining experiments of nanograined PLD Ni provides feedback for models of the deformation and failure in nanograined FCC metals, and suggests a greater complexity in the active mechanisms. The investigation into the deformation and failure mechanisms of FCC metals via in-situ TEM straining experiments has been expanded to the effect of hard particles on the active mechanisms in nanograined aluminum with alumina particles. The microstructures investigated were developed with varying composition, grain size, and particle distribution via tailoring of the PLD conditions and subsequent annealing. In order to develop microstructures suitable for in-situ deformation testing, in-situ TEM annealing experiments were performed, revealing the effect of nanoparticle precipitates on grain growth. These films were then strained in the TEM and the resulting microstructural evolution will be discussed. In-situ TEM straining experiments currently provide a wealth of information into plasticity within nanomaterials and can potentially, with further development of TEM and nanofabrication tools, provide even greater investigative capabilities.« less
  2. In situ TEM investigation into the thermal stability of nanograined FCC metals.

    Nanostructured materials often display very unique properties related to their far-from-equilibrium nature. Due to these unique structures, many of these materials transform into other, more stable microstructures with minimal thermal excitation. This work will highlight examples of the unexpected routes taken during the microstructural evolution of pulsed-laser deposited (PLD) free-standing face-centered cubic (FCC) thin films as a function of deposition condition and annealing temperatures. A direct comparison between the grain growth dynamics observed during in situ TEM annealing experiments in PLD films of high-purity aluminum, copper, gold and nickel films, as well as aluminum-alumina alloys shows a multitude of kinetics.more » For high-purity systems film thickness, void density, grain size distribution, and deposition temperature were found to be the primary factors observed controlling the rate, extent, and nature of the grain growth. The growth dynamics ranged from nearly classical normal grain growth to abnormal grain growth resulting in a bimodal grain size distribution. The grain growth rate was found to be highly dependent on the materials system despite all of the films being nanograined FCC metals produced by similar PLD parameters. The investigation of the aluminum-alumina alloys produced under various compositions and deposition parameters suggests that particle pinning can be used to maintain nanostructured films, even after annealing treatments at high homologous temperatures. In addition to investigating the grain growth dynamics and the resulting grain size distribution, the variety of internal microstructures formed from thermal annealing were evaluated. These structures ranged from intergranular voids to stacking-fault tetrahedra. An unexpected, metastable hexagonal-closed packed phase was indentified in the high-purity nickel films. These in situ TEM observations have provided key insight into the microstructural evolution of nanograined free-standing metal films and the defect structure present in the grains resulting from various growth dynamics, in addition to suggesting multiple methods to tailor the structure and the resulting properties of nanostructured free-standing films.« less
  3. Hall-Petch relationship in pulsed laser deposited nickel films.

    Thin-film mechanical properties can be measured using nanoindentation combined with detailed finite element modeling. This technique was used for a study of very fine grained Ni films, formed using pulsed-laser deposition on fused silica, sapphire, and Ni substrates. The grain sizes in the films were characterized by electron microscopy, and the mechanical properties were determined by ultra-low load indentation, analyzed using finite element modeling to separate the mechanical properties of the thin layers from those of the substrates. Some Ni films were deposited at high temperature or annealed after deposition to enlarge the grain sizes. The observed hardnesses and grainmore » sizes in these thin Ni films are consistent with the empirical Hall-Petch relationship for grain sizes ranging from a few micrometers to as small as 10 nm, suggesting that deformation occurs preferentially by dislocation movement even in such nanometer-size grains.« less
  4. In situ TEM straining of nanograined Al films strengthened with Al2O3 nanoparticles.

    No abstract prepared.
  5. Strain fields around high-energy ion tracks in a-quartz.

    No abstract prepared.
  6. Science at the interface : grain boundaries in nanocrystalline metals.

    Interfaces are a critical determinant of the full range of materials properties, especially at the nanoscale. Computational and experimental methods developed a comprehensive understanding of nanograin evolution based on a fundamental understanding of internal interfaces in nanocrystalline nickel. It has recently been shown that nanocrystals with a bi-modal grain-size distribution possess a unique combination of high-strength, ductility and wear-resistance. We performed a combined experimental and theoretical investigation of the structure and motion of internal interfaces in nanograined metal and the resulting grain evolution. The properties of grain boundaries are computed for an unprecedented range of boundaries. The presence of rougheningmore » transitions in grain boundaries is explored and related to dramatic changes in boundary mobility. Experimental observations show that abnormal grain growth in nanograined materials is unlike conventional scale material in both the level of defects and the formation of unfavored phases. Molecular dynamics simulations address the origins of some of these phenomena.« less
  7. Direct single ion machining of nanopores.

    The irradiation of thin insulating films by high-energy ions (374 MeV Au{sup +25} or 241 MeV I{sup +19}) was used to attempt to form nanometer-size pores through the films spontaneously. Such ions deposit a large amount of energy into the target materials ({approx}20 keV/nm), which significantly disrupts their atomic lattice and sputters material from the surfaces, and might produce nanopores for appropriate ion-material combinations. Transmission electron microscopy was used to examine the resulting ion tracks. Tracks were found in the crystalline oxides quartz, sapphire, and mica. Sapphire and mica showed ion tracks that are likely amorphous and exhibit pits 5more » nm in diameter on the surface at the ion entrance and exit points. This suggests that nanopores might form in mica if the film thickness is less than {approx}10 nm. Tracks in quartz showed strain in the matrix around them. Tracks were not found in the amorphous thin films examined: 20 nm-SiN{sub x}, deposited SiOx, fused quartz (amorphous SiO{sub 2}), formvar and 3 nm-C. Other promising materials for nanopore formation were identified, including thin Au and SnO{sub 2} layers.« less
  8. Relaxation of compressively strained AlGaN by inclined threading dislocations.

    Transmission electron microscopy and x-ray diffraction were used to assess the microstructure and strain of Al{sub x}Ga{sub 1?x}N(x = 0.61-0.64) layers grown on AlN. The compressively-strained AlGaN is partially relaxed by inclined threading dislocations, similar to observations on Si-doped AlGaN by P. Cantu, F. Wu, P. Waltereit, S. Keller, A. E. Romanov, U. K. Mishra, S. P. DenBaars, and J. S. Speck [Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 674 (2003) ]; however, in our material, the dislocations bend before the introduction of any Si. The bending may be initiated by the greater lattice mismatch or the lower dislocation density of our material,more » but the presence of Si is not necessarily required. The relaxation by inclined dislocations is quantitatively accounted for with the model of A. E. Romanov and J. S. Speck [Appl. Phys. Lett. 83, 2569 (2003)], and we demonstrate the predicted linear dependence of relaxation on layer thickness. Notably, such relaxation was not found in tensile strained AlGaN grown on GaN [J. A. Floro, D. M. Follstaedt, P. Provencio, S. J. Hearne, and S. R. Lee, J. Appl. Phys. 96, 7087 (2004)], even though the same mechanism appears applicable.« less
  9. Plan-view image contrast of dislocations in GaN.

    We demonstrate that when vertical threading dislocations in (0001) GaN are imaged in plan-view by transmission electron microscopy, a surface-relaxation contrast operates in addition to that due to the strain fields of dislocations passing through the specimen. We show that all three dislocation types (edge, screw, and mixed) can be detected in the same image using g = (11{bar 2}0) and 18{sup o} specimen tilt from [0001], allowing total densities to be assessed properly. The type of an individual dislocation can also be readily identified.
  10. Mechanical properties of ion-implanted amorphous silicon.

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"Follstaedt, David Martin"

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